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Location: Seattle, WA
Joined: 08/29/2007
Posts: 190
Custom Rifle Question.

Hello! I'm having a custom rifle built by my gunsmith in the next month or so but I can't decide what caliber I want the rifle chambered in. This rifle is going to be used for Elk primarily built on a model 700 action with a Dougles barrel and a Bell and Carlson stock. The action is standard long 30/06 from a model 700. My smith is pointing me to a 8mm-06 the ballistics look (OK) but I'm thinking maybe 358 Norma Mag or something diffrent. I own 300 mag and 7mm mags so I guess I'm looking for something a little diffrent I'm new to the whole wildcat concept I'm 27yrs old but my father would be reloading for whatever I decide to have put together. I'm asking what you guys would reccommend for a wildcat that will fit in my action. Anyone have any experiences using the 8mm-06 on Elk? I know it used to be more popular years ago in all the older German Mauser rifles guys brought back from WW2. Thanks!

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Location: Sequim, WA
Joined: 07/29/2009
Posts: 22
Custom Rifle Question.

Similar to 8mm-06 would be to go .338-06. Large variety of bullets available for reloads with .338 cal. Also the .35 Whelan is built on the '06 case sized up. All mentioned are generally considered good elk cartridges. Do you plan to shoot long range?

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Location: Seattle, WA
Joined: 08/29/2007
Posts: 190
Custom Rifle Question.

It might be a mixed bag of diffrent ranges no more than 300yds I would guess...

Don Fischer's picture
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Location: Antelope, Ore
Joined: 03/24/2005
Posts: 3173
Custom Rifle Question.

Well this is just me but I'd go for either a 7mm-270 Ack Imp or a 30-06 Ack Imp.

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Location: Sequim, WA
Joined: 07/29/2009
Posts: 22
Custom Rifle Question.

My reloading manual has the 8mm-06 at upto 2400 fps with 220 grain bullets which would be fine out to 300 yds. Wouldn't think it to be very flat shooting much beyond that.

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Location: Seattle, WA
Joined: 08/29/2007
Posts: 190
Custom Rifle Question.

The 30-06 Ack Imp sounds nice, maybe that would be a good choice...

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Location: Rivesville, WV
Joined: 07/22/2009
Posts: 5
Custom Build

If I were you I would consider stopping the build for now. It sounds like you really do not know what you want. And to build a custom rifle without knowing exactly what you really want is a mistake.

It costs a lot of money to have a custom built. And after you have one built if you decide it is not exactly what you want--too bad you are stuck. And if you want to sell it then you are going to loose your butt. Custom rifles are great, but they are not a good investment. When you try to resale a custom you will loose a good bit of money.

I really llke the 30-06 cartridge. It is tough to beat. Some of the other cartrdiges mentioned are great also. But it is tough to beat the 30-06. And it would probably have a better resale value if you decide to sell it. Tom.

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Location: Seattle, WA
Joined: 08/29/2007
Posts: 190
Custom Rifle Question.

To be honest I'm looking to have this rifle built for fun, I have many other rifles in calibers from 17hmr - 300 Rum around 30 different modern rifles I own at the moment so I'm covered for all my hunting needs, this rifle I just want something different something I cant buy in a production rifle so for me I really cant lose on whatever cartridge I choose. I'm leaning towards a 8mm-06 because I don't own a 8mm rifle as of yet, I'm also aware of the cost to build such a rifle.

Don Fischer's picture
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Location: Antelope, Ore
Joined: 03/24/2005
Posts: 3173
Custom Rifle Question.

Welcome to BGH Hogghead. Really good first post!

Elk-aholic, darn rules have changed. You have that many rifles get something really different, 6.5-06. I love mine! Wanted a 1-8 twist but ended up with a 1-9. Shoots 140gr bullet's pretty well any way. Closest thing you can get to the 256 Newton. Have killed two elk with mine and the 140gr Hornady, one shot each. One at close range one near 300yds. Died in her bed. 129gr load is a super load, killed a bunch of deer with it and they just fall down. Very long bullet and think it would work real well on elk too.

Let me start over. If I did it again, I'd go with the 6.5-270. Bit longer neck and easy to neck 270 cases down just a bit. They are what I use now but I have to do some trimming.

exbiologist's picture
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Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/19/2008
Posts: 2399
Custom Rifle Question.

I did exactly what you were thinking last year, I built a .358 Norma on a Rem 700, 7mm Mag (had a larger bolt face than your .30-06=easier conversion), put on a Douglas barrel and B&C Alaska Hunter II stock (from stockysstocks.com). It shoots great and weighs 7.65 lbs scoped. But kicks like a frickin mule. What you want is doable, but there will be some additional machining involved with converting from an -06 bolt face. Mabye consider a 9.3x62 Mauser if you don't want the additional expense.
Oh yeah, on mine, it's goat 24" #3 contour barrel, got the reamer from 4-d reamer rental. 250 grain Partitions average 2850 fps, producing 4,400 ft. lbs! Get something festive!!! Oh and you can for brass from the .338 or drop about $1.50 each on proper Norma brass.

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Location: Seattle, WA
Joined: 08/29/2007
Posts: 190
Custom Rifle Question.

That's what I'm talking about with that 358 Norma Mag! That thing rocks! The ballistics look untouchable to me would take anything North America has to offer even the biggest bears wouldn't stand a chance! neener! I don't really have any fast 25 Cal's in my arsenal nothing that is a 500yd Antelope or Mule deer gun besides my big 300 and 7mm mags and that 6.5-06 sounds good! I always wanted a 257 WBY MAG and I'm guessing that the 6.5 is around the same ball park. I just have to make up my mind and decide if I want another Elk toy or a long range deer rifle. Decisions are tough you should have seen how long it took me to decide what binoculars to buy last month I was online for weeks trying to figure that one out! Brick Wall,)

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